Wednesday, December 12, 2012

TBR welcomes Owen Carey Jones

TBR: Welcome to TBR, Owen. Will you share a little bit about yourself?
Owen: I was born in Belize in the Caribbean but grew up in Nairobi in Kenya. When my family returned to the UK, I was 16 and after a couple of wasted years at school, I started work as a bank clerk. Over the years I moved jobs fairly regularly and was for a time a management consultant before starting a business publishing specialist magazines for the financial services market.

At the age of 45, I became ill and had to undergo emergency quadruple heart byass surgery. Following that, I closed my publishing business and began writing. That led to me doing an MA in Screenwriting (Fiction) at the Northern Film School in Leeds and then to me writing, producing and directing three feature films, the last of which was shown in cinemas across the whole of the UK.

TBR: Tell us about Rough Cut and where it's available.
Owen: Rough Cut was the first thing I wrote following my heart bypass surgery and over the last ten years, while I have been making my films, it has been developed into a feature film screenplay. When the film project, which was progressing well with a Hollywood producer on board, fell apart, I decide to rewrite Rough Cut, the novel, and publish it.

Rough Cut is available in paperback and Kindle formats from Amazon here in the UK: and also in the US:

TBR: Please tantalize us with a story blurb or excerpt.
Owen: Rough Cut is a murder mystery thriller involving synthetic diamonds and the French Riviera.

When a New York dealer in gemstones discovers a number of top quality synthetic diamonds in a batch he has bought, industry watchdog, the Federation of International Diamond Traders calls in Belizean, Carter Jefferson to trace their origin and eliminate the threat to the market.

Old relationships are revived and family secrets emerge as an attractive English girl and a passionate young Frenchman are sucked into the web of deceit and death surrounding the illicit gems.

TBR: Are you a plotter or pantser?
Owen: I think I am a plotter. This is probably because of my screenwriting training where we were taught to develop the plot first, beginning with a story idea, developing it into a synopsis and then into a step outline which effectively details every main event of the story.

TBR: How do you develop your characters?
Owen: As mentioned above, when writing a story, I generally develop the story first and then populate with characters who seem to be appropriate to the story I am telling. However, I do also like to give the main characters some depth by giving them a back story which leads to their involvement in the main story and, hopefully, makes the reader care about what happens to them (positively or negatively).

TBR: Which of your characters would you most/least like to invite to dinner, and why?
Owen: I think I would most like to invite Eloise to dinner! Why? Because she is young and beautiful with a mind of her own! Nuff said - I’m a sad old biscuit! But if she wasn’t available, I’d be happy to visit Carter on his beach in Belize and have a few beers with him while we watched the sea and put the world to rights.

TBR: What's next for you?
Owen: I have almost finished the first draft of Cutting Edge, my next novel which follows on from Rough cut in that it has the same lead character in Carter Jefferson and is again about the diamond industry. But the locations are different - Oxford and Santa Monica, both places I know reasonably well. I am hoping that Cutting Edge, the next Carter Jefferson thriller, will be available early next year and will again be published in paperback and e-book formats.

TBR: Any other published works?
Owen: No other books but I have three feature films out there: Baby Blues, a Mind of Her Own and The Spell. Between them, they have now been seen in cinemas and on television by more than 50 million people in countries on four continents including china, the USA and the UK.

TBR: What’s the most challenging aspect of writing? Most rewarding?
Owen: I love the process of constructing a plot, filling it with characters and then writing the story itself. But the most challenging thing I find is that sometimes when I am writing a scene, which I have already plotted in some detail, a character will go off and do something different, something that wasn’t in the plan. when that happens, I speak to the character and suggest they stick to the plan but, usually, they just shrig their shoulders and carry on, leaving me to make amendments in all that has gone before to match up with what the character has done!

TBR: What’s the most interesting comment you have received about your books?
Owen: Perhaps not the most interesting but certainly the most encouraging was a totally independent review of the book on where it was mentione din the same breath as Woody Allen’s film Midnight in Paris which was my film of the year last year. And as a film voting BAFTA member, I voted for it!

TBR: Who are some of your favorite authors and books? What are you reading now?
Owen: I have long been a fan of John Grisham and before that, when I was a boy, Ian Fleming – I used to save up my pocket money so that I could buy the latest James Bond book in hardback as soon as it came out. I still like thrillers and recently I read Dead Wood by Chris Longmuir which, without doubt, is the best book I have read in years.

TBR: Where can readers find you on the web?
Owen: I have two web sites, one for my films: and one for my book:

TBR: Is there anything you’d like to ask our readers?
Owen: Publishers and film distributors seem to struggle with books and films that are cross-genre, I think because they are unsure how to sell them – there isn’t a clear, well-worn path to follow. I’d like to ask readers how they feel about cross-genre books, for example a thriller which has a strong romantic sub-plot. Rough Cut is just such a book and it’s the sort of book I like but does that make me an oddity in the world of fiction, be it books or films?

TBR: Readers, Owen Carey Jones will give away a signed paperback copy of Rough Cut to one lucky commenter. He'll pick a winner on Monday December 17th (just in time for Christmas!) and announce the winner here. Be sure to leave your email address so he can contact you.

Thanks for visiting TBR, Owen. All the best to you.


  1. Hello Owen. A very interesting post. You've made a great career in the business. I was also a great James Bond fan and couldn't buy the books fast enough. I love intrigue and mystery. Sounds like a series I will follow. Your book is defintitly on my TBB list.
    Continued good luck to you.

  2. I read the Kindle version of your book, Owen, and loved it. Glad to see you here at TBR.


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